An Optimization Model to Determine an Appropriate Budget for Improving Work Zone SafetyAuthor/Presenter: Saha, Promothes
In order to keep up with demand, government agencies must maintain and rehabilitate roadways so the supply to the public is met. However, while maintaining and rehabilitating roadways, work zones are a major threat to both the safety of the drivers, as well as the workers. In the U.S., 799 people were killed in work zone crashes in 2017 which comprises 2.1% of total fatalities in motor vehicle crashes. It is therefore crucial to maximize the safety within the work zone while maintaining under a limited budget. The purpose of this study is to improve work zone safety within a limited budget most efficiently. This study will develop an optimization model to determine appropriate budget for improving work zone safety. The appropriate budget can be defined as the budget below which the rate of safety improvement per dollar spending is higher than the spending above the budget. The primary factors in the model included a wide range of safety countermeasures and the implementation costs. The model identified a best mix of safety countermeasures minimizing expected number of crashes based on the crash modification factors of the safety countermeasures within an appropriate budget. The appropriate budget was determined by conducting a sensitivity analysis. The developed methodology utilized a linear integer programming to identify the best mix of safety countermeasures. The methodology was implemented on a work zone project as a case study. The developed methodology will help engineers in making funding decisions to improve safety on work zones.